Railroad Survey Targets and Prisms


Railroads often present an array of challenges for survey teams due to the difficult terrain and less-than-ideal conditions for proper target placement on railroad tracks.


Along with bridges, buildings, and other structures where periodic monitoring is essential to the continued safety and long-term reliability of man-made constructions, railroads often require relatively frequent upkeep due to the strains and pressure constantly being exerted on them.


As a result, it’s essential for survey teams to have the right tools capable of withstanding the harsh conditions found in and around railways that can damage and destroy equipment not durable enough to provide accurate long-term monitoring.


For surveying teams that have made considerable investments in high precision total stations, it’s important to invest in equally reliable and accurate survey targets and prisms to ensure you’re getting the very best results each and every time a measurement operation is conducted.


Adaptable survey targets make for safer working conditions


One of the biggest concerns with railroad surveying is the constant threat of moving trains. Poor quality survey targets and prisms require frequent setup and maintenance, presenting a hazardous situation for individuals who need to be on or near railroad tracks for any length of time.


Systems requiring teams to stand on railways in the path of oncoming trains present a logistical headache for crews needing to obtain train schedules and plan projects around the restrictions of the railroad schedule. Using targets and prisms capable of being used from safe distances, these discussions are no longer a concern.


Survey targets and prisms designed for especially difficult surfaces allow for more complete measurements


Besides the primary safety concerns involved with surveying an active railway, the terrain itself can pose technical problems when it comes to installing survey markers and prisms onto difficult surfaces.


Underground voids and other problematic areas of track can make it nearly impossible to place standard size targets in key areas requiring monitoring. Compounded with the heightened safety concerns of monitoring operational railroads, surveyors are in need of new tools that create an altogether safer and more convenient way to accomplish their surveying assignments.


An innovative solution to railroad surveying issues


For survey teams ready to tackle the safety concerns, logistical headaches, and technical problems traditionally associated with working around these hazardous areas, Berntsen is proud to provide an array of survey targets and prisms designed especially for use in difficult or dangerous areas like railroads.


Designed and constructed by Rothbucher Systems, Berntsen’s catalog of surveying equipment is ideal for those looking to make extremely precise measurements consistently over long periods of time with minimal maintenance to targets and prisms placed in dangerous areas.


Once attached to the track, these targets make it possible to forgo scheduling around the railroad’s timetable by allowing crews to make their measurements outside of the danger zone and out of the path of trains. This also provides an obvious benefit to survey crews themselves as personnel can conduct their work without worrying about entering a hazard zone to conduct routine work.


Installation is also drastically improved without the need to drill into surfaces. Using high strength glue, targets and prisms can be set in place for short or long periods of time while maintaining the same level of precision.


Lastly, Berntsen’s inventory of survey and prism equipment includes models such as the RSMP15, a highly durable, UV-resistant survey prism small enough to fit in areas of track that are especially difficult to reach and service. The added benefit of specialized size and shape make these products perfect for surveyors who find themselves limited due to design constraints of standard target and prism models.


If you’re looking for a more accurate, safe, and convenient solution for survey projects that present considerable challenges, visit Berntsen’s survey target and prism product pages or request a catalog today.